Real drivers review new 2019 EV models
10.24.2019 - by Noah Barnes
Real drivers review new 2019 EV models

This year, four new all-electric vehicles were released, the Audi e-tron, Hyundai Kona Electric, Jaguar I-PACE, and Kia Niro EV. Now that they have been on the market for several months, we asked our supporters that are driving these cars to share their experiences with these vehicles.


Kia Niro EV

Herbert A.
Sacramento, CA

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Yes, the car is very responsive and great to drive. Plenty of room for passengers in both the front and rear seats.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
The instant power that comes with driving an EV. But besides that the smart cruise control.

What, if anything, could be improved?
Adding HD Radio. Disappointed with a new car that it did not have HD Radio.

Doug D.
Eagle Point, OR

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
It’s like a mini SUV. While we live in a more rural area the range is more than enough for almost anywhere we go. If I need to pick up a few 2 x 4 x 8’s they will fit and I can drive the 20 mile round trip to the lumber yard without burning fuel in my 8 MPG truck. I have also carried an 8′ step ladder in it.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
It’s quiet, has great responsiveness and acceleration and the seats are more comfortable than just about any car I have ever been in.

What, if anything, could be improved?
Get rid of the piece of plastic under the hood that seems to be designed to make it look like there is an engine under the hood.

David S.
Portland, OR

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Absolutely recommend. Only had the car a little over a week, but absolutely love it. Gets more than the stated 239 mile range with the driving we do, has plenty of room, (including cargo space) very well designed features, responsive drive, neat and crisp control. Handles well, plenty of pickup, and very sensibly and intelligently designed from an ergonomic point of view. Seats four comfortably, five in a pinch. Actual leg room in the back, sufficient for adults.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
Intelligently designed controls and safety features.

What, if anything, could be improved?
Honestly, other than things that will require gradual improvements in technology, like superior battery technology, I can’t really think of anything. For me, this is the EV I’ve been waiting for. Would hope that the price will come down somewhat in the future relative to other cars, but with incentives it was affordable.

Mryia W.
Galloway, OH

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
I definitely recommend the Kia Niro EV. I am over 7,000 miles into ownership and have found it to perform far beyond expectations. I currently average 4.6 m/kWH which puts us routinely in the 300 miles range with a full charge (EPA estimate 239). I drive primarily highway (70mph in my area) and love having this type of range even at higher speeds. I have found the cargo space to be very helpful when moving my daughter into her apartment and when cleaning out my grandparent’s home as part of my executor duties.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
I love the efficiency of the vehicle which has let me far exceed the range estimation. I also own a Nissan Leaf and in comparison the Niro EV outperforms the average m/kWH (especially on the freeway and in high/low temperatures). I have always hated how much variance I would see in the GOM (Guess-O-Meter) of the range in the Leaf but in the Niro EV, I expect see next to no variance in what the estimate range is and what the actual range turns out to be.

What, if anything, could be improved?
So far, I have only found tiny things that I would change about the Niro EV like having an automatic liftgate available on the back hatch so that I could press a button on the remote fob and have the hatch not only unlock but also open. I also would like a small light on the back side of the sun visor so that the mirror would be easier to use in low light situations. The only big thing I can think of is that I hope they expand where the vehicle is sold (we drove 425+ miles from home to get one), if would be great to see it available in all 50 states (and if it isn’t stocked everywhere, at least they could allow orders).


Hyundai Kona Electric

Daniel H.
Irvine, CA

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Yes I fully recommend this vehicle because of its range, responsiveness, styling and comfort.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
The mileage range.

What, if anything, could be improved?
The back seats need more legroom and the trunk area behind the backseat needs more room. My previous Nissan Leaf had more such room than this car has.

Gordon H.
Manorville, NY

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Yes I like it

What do you like best about this vehicle?
Never have to go to a gas station, no oil to change, service it once a year

What, if anything, could be improved?
Front wheel drive not the best on an electric car, real wheel is much better.

Lee W.
Baltimore, MD

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
YES! Because it is easier to drive, comfortable, gets great eMPG, has decent storage space in the back, the information system is fairly easy to figure out, and it’s nice looking.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
For us it’s a perfect combination of size, capacity and range. We needed a car that we could parallel park in the city easily (under 170 inches long and this one is about 165 so perfect), had good range because we regularly take 100+ miles driving trips and this car gets easily over 250 on a full charge. We downsized from two cars to one so it had to do all of these things well and it really does.

What, if anything, could be improved?

  1. Should be able to open the rear liftgate from the driver’s seat but you have to get out and open it from the outside.
  2. There should be a prominent button in the infotainment system to “stop charging” like there is in the MyHyundai BlueLink app, but there is not. So if you are in an area of poor or no cellular connectivity using a public charging station can sometimes be challenging.
  3. Hyundai should provide an adapter for 240 V charger, not just 110V. I had to buy one myself and Hyundai support could not or would not tell me if it would work properly with the Kona and/or void the battery warranty.
  4. Hyundai Customer Service also could not tell me if the external accessories for the gas Kona will fit on the EV, even though the body is almost exactly the same. For example, the roof rack that attaches to the removable tracks on the roof.

Audi e-tron

Karsten K.
Lake Grove, NY

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Absolutely recommended. I love this car. It is a high quality car. The manufacturing is excellent. It is quite and astonishingly quick for it’s size and weight.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
The silence inside. It’s a very quiet car.

What, if anything, could be improved?
Range, power consumption.

Michael M.
Austin, TX

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Highly recommend for style and comfort

What do you like best about this vehicle?
The ride and quietness.

What, if anything, could be improved?
The range.

Richard T.
Weehawken, NJ

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Highly recommend. Quiet, comfortable, luxurious and fast.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
Quiet

What, if anything, could be improved?
Range


Jaguar I-PACE

Holly K.
Wilmington, DE

Do you recommend this vehicle? Why or why not?
Yes!!! Finish and interior are beautiful, smooth driving and ride. Much better customer service and convenience than Tesla.

What do you like best about this vehicle?
Appearance, ride, apple car play

What, if anything, could be improved?
Better/faster public charging network

 

4 comments on “Real drivers review new 2019 EV models”
  1. Jacob Kraniak says:

    A couple points in reply to your comment.

    > We just don’t have $700-$2000 a month to spare.

    Even on the mid-high end price of a Tesla Model 3, the lowest monthly payment without a downpayment is $627/month. A trade-in significantly brings that down. Another important point is that you are paying next to nothing for fuel, as opposed to the average $50-100/month extra for a typical gas vehicle cost.

    >I’m talking about teachers, nurses, production-line workers, cooks, janitors, local artists and musicians, tire-change techs; the people in our community not being outrageously compensated for their, very necessary, labor.

    yes, this is a problem but really a separate issue from what’s being discussed here.

    >Until prices of new EVs drop below $20000 on the road, we’re just whistling in the wind.

    The average price of a new car is $35,000. Many current EVs are already at this price from the get go. Taking the total cost of ownership with fuel/maintenance costs into mind, a good amount of EVs are already cheaper to own than comparable gas cars.

    The cost of gasoline is only going to increase over time. The cost of batteries and electricity to charge is only going to decrease over time.

    I’d also like to you to take a look at the Mini Cooper SE, which just had it’s price announced at $30,750. This is before the $7500 Federal Tax Credit (and up to $2000 State Tax Rebate in some states). This bring the cost to under $2,500 for a car with ~150mi of range, which is more than enough for the weekly needs of most American commuters.

    >At the moment, even used EVs, other than the Leaf with its well documented battery issues, command exorbitant prices.

    Check out PlugInAmerica’s Used EV Guide. If you look around, there are plenty of options for $10-15k or less. https://pluginamerica.org/why-go-plug-in/buying-a-used-electric-car/.

    >When you add limited availability across most of the US for most EVs, then you can understand the limited interest in them.

    You can have cars delivered via Carvana from anywhere in the country.

    I think if you do a little research, you’ll learn that EVs are not only more fun to drive, but cheaper and more accessible than ever before!

  2. Aletia Morgan says:

    Consider the total costs of ownership, not just the selling price. When you factor in federal rebates for EVs, lower fuel costs, the absence of costs for oil changes and other typical maintenance items, the 5-year cost of an EV is far lower than a typical gas car. Yes, you may pay a higher electricity bill, but the overall fuel costs per mile are still far lower, and there are often opportunities for free charging in workplaces and the like.

    It’s a win-win for the wallet and the environment!

  3. Jiminy says:

    Too bad the KIA and Hyundai electrics are not available in most states. I live in Arizona and none of these are sold or supported here.

  4. Alex Wilson says:

    Currently, all new EVs are well beyond being affordable to people who earn less than $100,000 per annum. We just don’t have $700-$2000 a month to spare.
    I’m talking about teachers, nurses, production-line workers, cooks, janitors, local artists and musicians, tire-change techs; the people in our community not being outrageously compensated for their, very necessary, labor.
    Until prices of new EVs drop below $20000 on the road, we’re just whistling in the wind. At the moment, even used EVs, other than the Leaf with its well documented battery issues, command exorbitant prices.. When you add limited availability across most of the US for most EVs, then you can understand the limited interest in them.

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